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The Personalization Paradox: Where Marketers Are Missing the Mark

By Yara Lutz, SVP, Customer Success. As customer expectations for personalized experiences continue to soar, brands are under pressure to deliver tailored content that resonates on a personal level. Instant gratification has become the norm, with consumers expecting brands to anticipate their needs and preferences at every touchpoint.

Yet, despite the widespread adoption of personalization strategies, many marketers are falling short on the expectation of personalization. According to McKinsey, while aspire to deliver personalized experiences, think they are doing it well.

The biggest question is: Why are marketers continuing to miss the mark?

Personalization is a Moving Target

One of the biggest barriers to achieving the type of personalization that consumers demand lies in definitions. “Hyper-personalization” means something different to everyone. And every brand is seeking a different metric of success around personalization.

To further complicate, what personalization means has changed over time. What’s commonplace now was a pipe dream a decade ago. So, marketers are chasing a moving target.

But there’s still a gap between what consumers expect and what brands deliver. And theoretically, marketers will never close it because it continues to move and shift. This is one of the reasons why marketers are missing the mark with personalization.

The Importance of Cross-Channel

Let’s consider a not-so-uncommon story of Zoe, a frequent flyer with a major airline. After her bag was lost on a recent trip, she expected not just acknowledgment of her inconvenience but also appropriate support. Instead, she received generic offers for Caribbean vacations and romantic getaways—offers completely unrelated to her situation, highlighting a glaring disconnect.

The airline missed a crucial opportunity to leverage the data captured from Zoe’s complaint across channels, resulting in a disjointed and impersonal interaction. And this is a common scenario.

This trend suggests a broader issue: brands are struggling to extend their personalization efforts beyond basic email and website interactions. While these channels remain popular choices for delivering personalized content, today’s customers seek cohesive and authentic interactions across all aspects of the brand experience.

True personalization involves integrating tailored interactions both online and in-store, which not only improves customer service, but also strengthens emotional connections, thereby enhancing loyalty and intent to purchase. And it’s no longer optional.

But 85% of brands don’t think they are succeeding with personalization. That means there are obstacles preventing most brands from winning at personalization. While it could be about team and talent, many of these obstacles usually point back to technology, data, and intelligence.

The Role of Data and Intelligence

Marketers have access to a wealth of available data within their marketing technology stack. But most aren’t fully leveraging the information to craft truly engaging customer experiences.

Succeeding with omnichannel personalization requires more than just the data; you need intelligence derived from that data.

The ability to collect real-time data on customer preferences across marketing channels enables brands to anticipate key moments and reasons for interaction with their audience. By identifying and capitalizing on these opportunities, brands can increase the proportion of personalized content in their marketing mix, ultimately driving higher conversion rates and revenue growth.

Research from McKinsey underscores the fiscal impact of personalized customer journeys, suggesting that brands could improve revenue and customer retention ROI through effective personalization strategies.

As brands aim to maximize customer lifetime value, the focus must shift from acquisition to retention, creating lasting experiences that foster repeat purchases. Building emotional connections with customers not only encourages loyalty but also increases the likelihood of cross-category purchases and advocacy.

By leveraging the wealth of data at their disposal and embracing advanced personalization technologies, brands can unlock significant revenue potential and cultivate long-lasting relationships with their customers.

ƵAPP Unlocks Omnichannel Personalization

While the importance of personalized customer experiences is widely acknowledged, there is still untapped potential for brands to harness the full power of data-driven personalization.

For brands to hit the mark on personalization, they need to invest in advanced technology like the ƵAPP Marketing Platform with integrated GenAI and adopting a customer-centric approach. By prioritizing modern tech, brands can position themselves for success in an increasingly competitive marketplace, driving higher engagement, loyalty, and revenue growth.

Learn how ƵAPP powers personalization at scale.

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